Ciao! I know I have not been the most active blogger lately, but I have had a lot of super fun projects in the works as well as dealing with some web-site transitions and re-designing. Next month, I will have a revamped site and lots of new recipes. With that being said, life has been all work lately and nothing is more relaxing than heading to a restaurant after work to enjoy happy hour.
A few weeks ago, I was invited to Carrabba’s to sample offerings from their new Happy Hour, which is now available 7 days a week. That is right, SEVEN days a week. For busy people like me, that is music to my ears. I have long been a fan of Carrabba’s and every experience with them is not only memorable, it is down right delicious.
I headed over on a Monday evening after work to the South Tampa location which is closest to my house. As soon as I waked in, my friend and I were greeted with big smiles and intoxicating aromas from the kitchen. We grabbed two seats at the bar and began to enjoy our evening.
My nickname is Champagne Girl for a reason and my eyes lit up when I spotted a Blackberry Bellini on the happy hour menu. For $5, it should be a sin to cost almost the same as my morning coffee. It was just what I needed to cure my Monday Blues and as I sipped on it, I could feel the stress just melting away.
Being that it was National Margarita Day, my partner in crime went with a Sicilian Prickly Pear Margarita and as soon as he turned his head, I stole a sip. Pure bliss, I wound up ordering one after I finished my Bellini.
Ok, let’s get serious for a moment. I know there are many places that offer Happy Hour, but to offer it 7 days a week is just brilliant. I work in the hospitality industry, so my days off vary and I often miss happy hour at local spots. Just the fact that I can enjoy happy hour, given my crazy schedule, is just another reason I love Carrabba’s. Well, that and their Mussels in White Wine Lemon Butter which got me years ago.
Here are some of the highlights for drinks during Happy Hour:
Sicilian Prickly Pear Margarita
Sparkling Tuscan Lemonade
Eating is one of my passions and I think I do it pretty well. Since I ALWAYS get the mussels at Carrabba’s, I wanted to try something different during my visit. I made a deal with my dining buddy and we each chose an appetizer.
If you read my blog, then you know I am OBSESSED with burrata. Once I spotted their Tomato Caprese with Fresh Burrata, I was sold. (Check out my recipe for Tracy’s Caprese Burger). Just imagine, creamy burrata mozzarella, tomatoes, fresh basil, red onions, balsamic glaze, drizzled with extra-virgin olive oil and you will understand why I was in heaven. I could eat like this every single day.
My friend ordered their Wood-Fired Italian Wings after a recommendation from the bartender. We both gobbled them up, as they were quite delicious. Seasoned with spicy Italian peppers and served with their gorgonzola dipping sauce, they were finger lickin’ good, literally!
Carraba’s offers half-off appetizers during their happy hour at the bar only. Selections include:
Mozzarella Marinara: Hand-cut and breaded, served with marinara sauce
Mussels in White Wine Lemon Butter: Prince Edward Island mussels steamed in white wine, basil and lemon butter sauce
Zucchini Fritte: Hand-breaded, lightly-fried and served with roasted garlic aioli
Wood-Fired Italian Wings: Seasoned with spicy Italian peppers and served with gorgonzola dipping sauce
Tomato Caprese with Fresh Burrata: Creamy burrata mozzarella, tomatoes, fresh basil, red onions, balsamic glaze, drizzled with extra-virgin olive oil
Calamari: Hand-breaded to order and served with marinara sauce
Shrimp Scampi: Garlic, white wine and lemon butter sauce served with baked ciabatta
So, the next time you are craving a cold beverage and tasty bites after work, Carrabba’s will surely take care of you. To find a location near you, click here. Happy hour typically runs from 3-6:30 pm at most locations.
Ok, so now for the good news……
I have partnered with Carrabba’s to share my happy hour experience with you and they have graciously given me a $50 gift card to give to one of my readers so that you may experience Happy Hour at Carraba’s. To enter, see below.
**Disclaimer: I was given a gift card from Carrabba’s to experience Happy Hour and write this review. All opinions are my own.